My Wireless Business Trip
Being an executive in the wireless industry, I tend to be an early adopter to new technologies and often rely on the technology, just a bit too much. My recent trip to the West Coast is a good case in point.
The Trip out: (picture is not the guy!)
While I was on the plane to the west coast I had the honor to be sitting next to a distinguished public figure. Since I want to honor his privacy I will not say who he was. We had a brief discussion as we observed that he was reading the Wall Street Journal in paper edition and I was reading it on the Kindle. I tried to demonstrate the coolness of the Kindle and he was mildly intrigued. For the next 5 hours of flight time he devoured his WSJ, ripping out many pages, taking copious notes on the torn articles, and filling then in a folder. Try that on a Kindle!
I rented a car from National and wanted to try there in car navigation system and compare it to by GPS enabled Google maps and the VZW navigator application. The Street Pilot from Garmin behaved like a bad “Saturday Night Live” sketch. It took many minutes to find its satellites and thus its location. It barked out directions in quick succession: “Turn Right, Turn Right , recalculating, Turn Left, Turn Left” The screen would have an arrow pointing right and the voice would say turn left. It was sad and amusing.
My passengers and I , not to be deterred (or detoured) switched our LBS direction technology. First the VZW Navigator was fired up, but for some reason refused to find our location. We then switched to a GPS enabled BlackBerry and achieved a similar fate. Perhaps we were in a GPS Bermuda triangle?
We finally used a plan vanilla version of Google Maps and easily found our way.
For my first battle with LBS technology click this link.
At the Continental Presidents Club”
We finished our meetings and settled into the Continental Presidents Club at the airport to wait a couple of hours for our flight. I connected to the free WIFI network that Continental provides and started to work. The problem was that the effective bandwidth I got through their WIFI was clocked in a not so impressive 20 KB/sec. 20KB,/Sec that is so last century!
Fortunately, I travel with lots of options. I disconnected from the WIFI and inserted an EVDO wireless card and presto, 250KB/sec.
I now feel vindicated for carrying an extra backpack of all my wireless “stuff”.